The $2 trillion stimulus bill in response to the COVID-19 pandemic was passed by the House on Friday, March 27 and signed by President Donald Trump.
The plan includes a one-time direct payment, which some Americans started receiving this weekend, according to the IRS. Individuals will receive up to $1,200, married couples will get up to $2,400 and $500 will be added for every child.
There are income restrictions: If you earn more than $75,000 as an individual or $150,000 as a couple, the total amount you're eligible to receive starts to decrease. If you earn $99,000 or more as an individual or $198,000 as a couple, you aren't eligible to receive a stimulus check.
To help you figure out how much money you'll likely receive, Grow, a personal finance website published by CNBC and Acorns, created a calculator that factors in your filing status, annual income and the number of kids you have.
The more you earn, the less money you'll get. If you earn $75,000 or less as an individual, you'll get the full $1,200. If you earn more than that, $5 will be subtracted for every additional $100 of income. (The checks phase out completely if you earn $99,000 or more.) The same sliding scale applies for couples earning between $150,000 and $198,000.
Jasmine Mah, who recently graduated with a master's of science from the University of Leeds, UK, and mathematician Maciej Kowalski created a similar "Stimulus Payment Calculator." To demonstrate how the payments are calculated, they provide an example of a married couple with two kids. Combined, the couple earns a total of $160,000. They don't qualify for the full $2,400 because they earn $10,000 over the cap, but they'll get a reduced check.
To calculate the amount they'll get, the calculator divides the excess by $100 and multiples that amount by $5. Here's the formula:
difference = (excess / $100) * $5
Here's what the formula would look like for the family of four:
($10,000 / $100) * $5 = $500
That means the family is eligible for $1,900 ($2,400 - $500). Plus, they'll get another $1,000 — $500 per kid — for a total of $2,900.
When it comes to getting your money, you don't need to apply for the checks. The money will automatically be transferred directly to the bank account you included in your most recent tax return. If the IRS doesn't have your direct deposit information, you'll get a check in the mail.
For more information, check out everything you need to know about the coronavirus stimulus checks.